Wednesday, November 17, 2010

The House That Built Me

I have thought about writing this post for about 3 weeks now and I guess it’s about time.

After 4 ½ years, we made the move back down south. To say I am excited is an understatement. Mason and Reagan will be about a 3 hour CAR ride away from their grandparents, cousins, aunts, uncles and dozens and dozens of extended family. I could not be happier. Growing up in a military family, I had the rare occasions of getting to spend quality time with my grandparents and it has been my goal since becoming a parent to give this experience that I missed out on, to my children. I want them to know my parents like I knew them. I want them to know Steve’s mom and get a chance to bond with all of them and develop their own relationship, one that is not based only around thanksgiving. I am so thankful that we will not be traveling by plane this thanksgiving. Traveling with two kids is not what I would call fun. Planes are crowded, security is nerve racking and I already feel less stressed about the holiday knowing we don’t have to worry about connections, who is watching Bailey and Jack, and how the kids will do on the plane. I am over the moon, to have a hand full of family ready and waiting to watch our kids so Steve and I can have a night out. I can’t wait to pick up with my college roomies and make memories of our children becoming friends. I can’t wait for Mason to experience SEC football and a game day down south. I am honored to not only call my parents, my parents but to call them my friends, and I know being closer to home will only make us closer. I am so happy, but, I know what all I am leaving behind.

Our family 2006

It took a while but Seattle became our home. We have many great memories there and I come back to the south a changed person. Not better, not worse, I just have more experience under my belt. Our family literally doubled in size in Seattle (by people count)- that is probably the biggest change in our lives. Our house became a home with the patter of little feet and babble of little words. I will never forget waking up Christmas Eve 2007, taking a pregnancy test and realizing in 9 months we were going to be parents. I won’t forget the expression on Steve’s face when he read Mason’s shirt that said “big brother” and he realized we were about to grow by two more feet. 11131 holds the memories of Mason’s first steps, his first words, his first tooth coming in, countless hugs and kisses, many giggles, many tears, and the moment he became a big brother. Our house hosted many playgroups, and visitors from TN, GA, AZ, KS and CA. I got to see my husband transform into a father and I was able to fall in love with him all over again. We brought our baby girl home to that house. We learned that no two children are alike and we learned your heart can continue to grow and overflow with love for all of your children. We got to hear Reagan’s first laugh, and watch her roll over for the first time. We endured our first trip to urgent care for her sensitive belly and we learned that hearing your child cry in pain is probably the worst torture you can inflict on a parent. I was able to begin the voyage of motherhood with an amazing group of moms and I will forever be a better person because of each and every one of them. Leaving that group and knowing that my children will not have daily contact with those wonderful mama’s still breaks my heart a bit. But I know, we will meet new friends and we will keep in touch with our first friends I was able to tap into more creativity than I knew I had thanks to my Tuesday Night Stampers. They became my mom’s away from mom and they treated my children like their own grandchildren. Steve and I tackled numerous house projects including remodeling a kitchen and building a deck. We learned there is more than one way to do things right and listening to each other can sometimes create an even better plan. We learned that living in a big city comes with an overwhelming amount of opportunities and shopping. I also learned to restrain from excess shopping. We learned being a neighbor isn’t just about living next to someone; it is about getting to know them and opening your doors and your heart to those relationships.

Our family 2010 (we still have B&J- it was just too hard to rangle two kids and two pets)I hope that Mason will have memories of Seattle. I hope he will remember play dates in the park, the Tulip Festival, and driving around looking at Christmas lights. 11131 was his first home and those walls share a million moments that helped shape who he is today. I know Reagan is too young to remember anything. But I can’t wait to share stories with her. And we will be back to visit. I left a piece of my heart in the northwest within all the beautiful friendships I made.

If I could give you one piece of advice it would be to move away for a while. Take the time to live outside your comfort zone, and force yourself to discover who you are when you have to begin from scratch. I promise you will come out of it thankful for all you have learned. Atleast I have.

Our house

Thank you 11131 for being such a big part of our lives. I know you will hold many great memories for your new family.

For those of you who don’t listen to country music you need to check out Miranda Lambert’s song “the house that built me”. It speaks to me in so many ways.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

In Her Shoes

Mason has discovered my shoes. He loves wearing them all the time. Nuff said.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

frick or freak

Those are the words you would hear if you were any where near Mase this halloween. He has a hard time with t's but he was so excited to go frick or freating. :) I decided that while he is young and doesn't know any better I will put him and Reagan in complimentary costumes. this year they were a farmer and a bag of taters. I loved it. They were so cute and he was so HAPPY in his costume- much better than the sad shark last year.

the farmer and his taters

We went on a hayride with the church across the street, with a weenie and marshmallow roast afterwards and then we frick or freated at a couple of houses and called it a night. It is amazing now that Mason is vocal to get an insight into his thoughts. The hayride was Sunday and Monday afternoon, we were in the car and Mason out of the blue said "more hayride, mommy, more hayride" I was so happy that he enjoyed it and that he remembered it.

Mason on the hayride-in awe of the tractor

Reagan was happy as can be in her costume. I bought it on etsy and was so happy with how it turned out. it says Marlowe tater farm and has her weight! it was a sack and it kept her warm throughout the night.
now to start thinking about next year's costumes...hmmm....

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

crazy two weeks

I can't believe it has been a little over two weeks since my last post. let's just say "it's been crazy" would be an understatement. In the last two weeks, my sister Mel and her family came to visit for 2 days, my parents flew up for about a week, a childhood friend stopped by with his family and me and the kids moved to Tennessee. WOW. I can't believe we survived it. There are many minor details that also happened but I am still too tired to think or type them all. So here are some highlights from the last two weeks.
Reagan really got into solids. She is loving them. She is a much messier eater than mason was but she has a lot more fun with it. Every small repair we needed to do in our house- is done, thanks to the hard work of my dad, mom and Steve. Mason and I said goodbye to some the best friends I could ever ask for. It was hard but I know we will keep in touch and that one day our paths will cross again. The Kurrus's came for a visit and Mason got to meet Patrick and Andrew for the first time. It was the first time I had met Patrick too. They had a blast, they ran around for about 4 hours together. I am so excited we will be closer and they will have this opportunity again. We boarded and survived our last plane ride from Seattle (for awhile atleast) it was pretty uneventful but with two kiddos flying is never fun for anyone so I am happy it is over.
here are just a few pictures from the last two weeks. I will post more soon. I promise. We are returning to the land of the living. :)

Reagan eating (not the first time but it was the first month of solids- like I said, it's been crazy)
Mason received a farewell gift from his buddy, Finn and on the way he was so tired but so excited he fell asleep holding it. (it was after our halloween party)
Mason and the Kurrus boys! I can't tell you how hard it was to get three little ones to look at the camera all at once!

Sunday, October 10, 2010

A picture is worth a thousand words

I am a firm believer that you can never take too many pictures! I never want to look back and think I wish we had more pictures of the kids when they were growing up so, our main splurge as parents, is to have photographers take our pictures. Because, let's face it, we are not professionals and we wanted pictures with US and the kids. Here is our sneak peek from last weeks session.

Reagan was so happy throughout the shoot!

She constantly has her hand in her mouth and I LOVE the giant flower!
She has the bluest eyes I have ever seen.
This is one of my favorite's of Reagan- I loved it in color until I saw it like this.
Our family with our pumpkins and red door.
Mason and I share this look many times throughout the day. It touches my heart to forever have this moment captured. I know one day he won't want me to hold him but for now, I treasure it.
Mason loves to play trains with dad. I was so happy we were able to get some pictures of him in action around the house!
Our sweet Bay with Mase.
I saved the best for last. words can't describe how much I love it. These are our kiddos at their best.
I can't wait to see the rest! Thanks for sharing the day with us Justine!

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Beginning of Fall

I love Fall. I love watching the leaves change. I love the smell in the air. And since having children, I have an all new appreciation and love for all things fall- especially pumpkin patches.

We have taken Mason every year (I know it's only our 3rd time, but we have made it every year) to a pumpkin patch to pick our family pumpkins. I was so happy this year to share this tradition with Reagan! (she was with us last year- just in my belly) We had a blast today. We even got to hang out with two of Mason's buddies, Ryan and Will. Mason was so excited to run around the patch with dad and look for the perfect pumpkin. It started off a little rocky- I wanted to take his picture by the height chart and he wanted to see the llama's. he won.

Poor Ryan just did not understand why Mason was so upset.

But he quickly changed moods (as a toddler often does) and the rest of the day was awesome.

Reagan was a trooper the whole day! Look at how tall she is getting.

Will and Mason- these two have been friends since they were 1 month old! I love seeing how much they have grown up.

We feel very blessed to have these two sweet kiddos in our life. They are the greatest gift we could ever as for.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

The return of Sophia

For those of you who don't know, Sophia, the giraffe, she has to be the BEST teething toy that exists. Mason loved Sophia and we spent many a month carrying her with us wherever we went.

Here we are two years later and it looks like Sophia is BACK...Reagan has been extremely oral since day one. She constantly puts everything in her mouth and within the last week the drool has picked up! So I decided it was time to resurrect Sophia. I am so glad I did, because Reagan had a blast with her today! She chewed on her and was happy as can be with her new friend.

I looked back and found the first pictures of Mason with Sophia and they happened to be taken at 5 months too! How funny. Here are my two cuties 2 years apart loving on the same toy. I love it.

Mason and Sophia- Dec. 2008

Reagan and Sophia- Sept. 2010

What drool, ma?!?!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Reagan 4 month check up

Yesterday, Reagan had her 4 month check up. I can't believe she is 4 months. Time flies- especially when it's the second!

Here are her stats:
14 lbs 10 oz
23 3/4 inches tall

She did great with her shots and is hitting all of her milestones- although I have to say I don't worry at all about this anymore. Everyone is different and will develop on their timeline so if you are a mom reading this- don't worry so much about what your kiddo is doing compared to others. Just enjoy them, love them for who they are, and everything will work out.

Here is our little sweet girl "standing with dad"

I had to include this pic because she was leaning forward and her head looks mighty big!

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Mason and the little chairs

Mason has a book, "Meeow and the little chairs." It is the story of a cat, Meeow, and his friends, baa, moo, quack and woof. Needless to say, these are Mason's favorite animals sounds to make. Anyhow, Meeow uses his imagination to take his chairs and make a train for him and his friends. We have read this book every night before bed for about a month. Mason has his own set of chairs and table in his room and earlier this week, we were playing down stairs and he ran upstairs, brought down his chairs and proceeded to put his animals in the chairs. He grabbed his bell and train whistle (both used in the book) and was so proud of the train he made!

Every day this week, he has used his chairs to make a train and on Friday, I finally had time to grab the camera and capture Mason and his train. Here are a few of my favorites. (if you look close in the background- you can see Reagan laying in Mason's "big boy bed!"

The red blur Mason is waving is his bell!

I love his passengers are a duck, a lion, a donkey and a rabbit.

Apparently the donkey didn't hear the bell.

And the lion and duck want to switch places....

He has a train hat, but insists on wearing his John Deere one.

Reagan, in the meantime, is laying in bed reading her own book.

After all that play, Mason decided he needed to relax with sister!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

A dawg at heart

I know this isn't a bulldog, but I truly believe Mason knows he is a DAWG at heart! We are so excited football is starting soon and can't wait to see how our Georgia Dawgs do this year!
(This is Mason's favorite bath towel- and he loves to put it on after bath time and go look at his dawg self in the mirror.) I fall more and more in love with this little boy everyday.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

4 months already?!?!?


Really? Really? You are 4 months already? I can't believe how fast you are growing. You are now THRIVING on Similac sensitive, you no longer have issues with gas or poo. It makes me happy :)

You are such a happy, silly little girl. Everything makes you smile. You can not get enough of your brother and you are itching to play with him. You love to hold your toys in your hands and stick them in your mouth.

You are sleeping really well at night- you only wake once a night between 1-3, eat and go right back to sleep. You take a short morning nap (about 45 minutes) and you enjoy a LONG afternoon nap in the arms of your mama.

You have great head control and have started spending time in your bumpo and excersaucer. We go on the 7th for your 4 month appointment and I can't wait to see how much you weigh!

Here are some of my favorite moments from the month!
You sitting in your bumpo

Lounging by the "pool" when it was too hot to be inside.

Wearing your shades while out for a walk.

Two of my three favorite people.

Love- mommy

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Big Boy Bed

I haven't wanted to say much, but since we have passed the one week mark without incident, I am ready to share......Mase is OFFICIALLY in a big.boy.bed! I am so excited.
We made the switch last Sunday and although he was really excited to be able to get in and out on his own, that first nap was a little rough. I didn't know if we were ready, but when he woke up, we talked about how big brothers sleep in big boy beds and apparently that was all he needed to hear. He has walked around the house saying "big boy bed, big boy bed" all.week.long. I have to remember to get Steve to video it, because it is absolutely the sweetest thing ever.
Mason has always been an amazing sleeper- he asks to go take a nap (not every day but it does happen often), he goes down every night between 7:30-8 pm and doesn't get up until about 7am. He rarely wakes in the middle of the night and when he does, I think it's a bad dream so I hold him for one song and lay him back down and he goes back down. And switching to the bed hasn't changed this. It is fabulous.

Although he isn't in focus in this picture- I love that it looks like he is dancing!

So our next challenges are potty training and loosing the bink. We will take our time on these.
Until then, I'll just be happy with our new bed!

Saturday, August 14, 2010

The kid with the bucket on his head

Mason loves to play this game, where he takes a bucket, puts it on his head and says "mommy, mommy"

I will turn toward him, see the bucket on his head and say, "oh no, where is mason? Where did he go?" He then laughs, takes the bucket off his head and continues to put it back on and play the game again, and again and again. This typically goes on for I don't know, 30 minutes or so.

Well, yesterday I was cooking dinner, and we began our game. I continued sauteing my onions and kept up my end "where's mason? Mason, where are you?" Then he came over to my leg, started tapping and saying "Rae? Rae? Rae?" (his name for Reagan) I kept cooking and said, she's in her pappison chair. Suddenly, something told me to turn around and to my surprise this is what I saw.

Our poor daughter with a bucket over her head. Surprisingly she didn't seem to mind, so I grabbed the camera to capture this moment. He was SO proud of himself, and I have to say including his sister into a mommy-mason game touched my heart. He wants her to be apart of our fun, our laughs, our lives. Let's just keep the bucket off her head for awhile, Mase!